OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — Douglas County officials held a press conference Sunday announcing 9 additional positive cases of COVID-19, along with two long term care residents of Douglas County Health Center.
The residents, identified as women in their 70's and 80's, are in isolation in their rooms and are being monitored by staff, according to the Douglas County Health Center.
Both residents are in stable condition and families were notified immediately after confirmation of the positive tests.
Since March 10, all visitors, volunteers and vendors were restricted from entering the health center and all approved staff are screened upon entering the building.
Staff members have been wearing face masks and proper personal protective equipment in the building since March 20.
The health center's emergency preparedness team has been working to ensure education and training has been done by all direct care staff.
“Protecting the health and well-being of our residents and employees remains our top priority,” said Erin Nelson, administrator at Douglas County Health Center. “Our team continues to be on high alert and will take every precaution possible. On behalf of Douglas County, we can assure the community we are going above and beyond to continue to provide compassionate care to our long term care residents.”
The new cases are believed to have been spread by a staff member who entered the facility. The staff member has been tested and results are pending.
Additionally, Douglas County Health Director Dr. Adi Pour said during a press briefing that 9 new cases were confirmed in the county Sunday.
Dr. Pour said more cases are expected as testing increases.
The latest cases involve a man and a woman in their 20s, a woman in her 50s, two women and a man in their 60s, two women in their 70s, and a woman in her 80s.
Four cases had a direct contact with a known case, two are travel-related and one is community-spread. One person is hospitalized.
The health department continues to investigate the other cases.
Currently, there are 66 cases of COVID-19 in Douglas County.
Dr. Pour and Omaha Mayor Jean Stothert stressed the importance of social distancing and staying home, urging big box stores to decrease crowds and for people to shop only if they urgently need supplies.
"There is nothing more important right now than social distancing," said Mayor Stothert.
A hotline is available to anyone with questions at 402-444-3400, answered daily from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Nebraska DHHS also has a hotline open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily at 402-552-6645.
Anyone with questions outside those hours should call 2-1-1.
Douglas County officials provided an update about COVID-19 after learning of the new cases.
Watch a live stream of the update from officials below.